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Symantec Takes Heat For Changing Adware Advice

Symantec's out-of-court settlement with an adware maker is a loss for users, an anti-spyware researcher said this week.

Friday, Feb. 24, the Cupertino, Calif. security company announced that it had dismissed its lawsuit against browser and e-mail toolbar maker Hotbar.com, Inc. Last June, Symantec filed a zero-dollar suit against the New York company, saying then that it was seeking a legal ruling that would affirm the position that Hotbar's programs "are indeed adware and can be treated as computer security risks."

Under the new arrangement struck with Hotbar, Symantec has agreed to dismiss the lawsuit but will still classify the company's software as "adware."

Symantec called it a victory.

"What we got out of this was peace from these guys," said Joy Cartun, Symantec's senior director of legal affairs. "We didn't change our detection, so in that way we won."

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